Jewel's Love Affair With Tropical North Queensland

22 November 2014
Read Time: 3.1 mins

For this tropics loving photographer, Tropical North Queensland offers a sense of freedom, adventure and a chance to commune with nature.

We caught up with one of our favourite photographers/ Instagrammers, Jewels Lynch (aka @Jewelszee), to chat about her recent trip to Queensland’s tropical north. From a hot air balloon ride over the countryside, travelling along dusty Outback roads and snorkelling the Reef, it’s safe to say Jewels is enamoured with the sights, sounds and flavours of TNQ.

Read our interview below to find out more...

 One of the many hues of the tropics

Was this your first time to Tropical North Queensland?

This was actually my third trip to TNQ in the past six months, but each time has been a different and wonderful experience.

Did anything take you by surprise? Did you have any preconceived ideas about what it would be like?

I was really surprised by how diverse the region actually was, as I had never visited the Outback regions of TNQ before. One minute I’m driving through lush rainforest and the next I’m on a dusty red dirt road! I loved that about my most recent trip.

 The view from the Tropical North Queensland bush

You covered a lot of ground, from hot air ballooning and helicopter rides to snorkelling, going on safari, river cruises and exploring the rainforest... which was your favourite activity?

My favourite part of the trip was definitely snorkelling at Agincourt Reef; I saw a sea turtle, so naturally this made my day! I must say though, hot air ballooning over Mareeba came in a really close second!

If you could use five words to describe TNQ to someone what would they be?

… Diverse, unique, adventure, nature, paradise!

 Making underwater friends

I’ve heard it can be hard to swim at some beaches at certain times of the year because of stingers and stonefish? Did this impact your trip at all?

Not at all. For snorkelling the reef we were provided with a head to toe stinger suit. These are great, they keep you completely protected from stingers and also from the sun, and I have to say I find them kinda sexy! [Laughs]. Also the main beaches have netted areas for swimming during stinger season.

What wildlife did you come across?

From first arriving at Jabiru Safari Lodge where I was greeted by an Emu family, to swimming with fish and turtles on the Great Barrier Reef and lunching with a Cassowary in the Daintree Forest, the wildlife encounters in TNQ are something I love most about the region!

With all the politics around The Great Barrier Reef and the environmental impacts, do you recommend people make hast to see it in all its glory before it’s too late?

Unfortunately yes I do. I believe visiting the GBR should be on the top of everyone’s bucket list, before it really is too late.

 Sky high in the tropics

You’ve done a fair bit of travel around Australia, how does TNQ compare to other parts of Queensland and Australia? What makes it special to you? How is it different?

I have travelled quite extensively over the past year throughout Australia, and I will always rate TNQ as one of my favourite Queensland destinations, because well, there is just something about it. The Reef for me is a huge part of it, but the rainforest has its own allure too. It’s like the lost world! What I also love is the sense of adventure that is so strong when you visit the region. There is such a feeling of freedom when you hit the road up there and the scenery changes so often, it’s quite amazing! The people are very friendly and I love the tropical climate.

 Sunshine, just about all the time

Describe the flavours of TNQ – I know you did a tropical fruit tasting, what was that like? What other meals did you have that stood out?

The tropical fruit is seriously to die for! I could quite easily have lived on the abundance of delicious fruits while I was there, but I also had an amazing lunch with a perfect view at Nu Nu’s in Port Douglas. All the food provided both on the Agincourt Reef day with Quicksilver, and the Daintree tour with Down Under Tours, was top class, and I have to say, the room service I had at Pullman Sea Temple, was the best I’ve ever had. The thing I noticed about all the various dining experiences was how fresh everything was, and that there was always attention to detail.

 The creatures you come across in the middle of nowhere

Who do you recommend TNQ to? City-slickers? Honeymooners? Families?

I really do think there is something for absolutely everyone in TNQ and for every budget too, but with such a strong trend in ‘adventure' and ‘road-trippin' in the current climate, I would have to say I’d most highly recommend TNQ for those who really want to go deep into nature, who crave adventure, who want more than just cocktails in paradise, who want to make the most out of every day away and for those who can’t sit still...TNQ is a dream destination for any adventurer!

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About Jewels Lynch

@Jewelszee started out as an instagrammer with an iPhone, until she won a photo competition and bought her very first DSLR in February 2013. She’s now set on photographing the world and she’s off to a pretty great start!
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Rachel Surgeoner

A self-confessed 'food-tourist', I take hunting for the world's greatest sandwich very seriously, my quest has taken me from Berlin to Hoboken. Stopping off only for vintage shopping, craft beers and Mediterranean sunsets.